Month: July 2019

Reviewing Fight for the Fallen and Marveling at the G1 Climax

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This is my first G1 Climax and it hasn’t disappointed one bit.

Yo! On today’s show, I get into the awkward psychology of Brandi Rhodes’ work at Fight for the Fallen, the somewhat flat babyface run of Hangman Page, Chris Jericho’s good but familiar heel work, the astonishing Dustin Rhodes and more. Then, I gush over my favorite wrestler, Kazuchika Okada, and look forward to his battle with Will Ospreay. Finally, I ponder the possibilities with Jay White and grin at the zaniness of Jon Moxley.

You can find the show on iTunes and the below links.

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Ode to a Pitcher: With the velocity still strong, Aroldis Chapman finds his slider

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Power.

Aroldis Chapman throws the baseball very hard. At his hardest, maybe no ever has thrown one harder. Now, as mileage and innings take their toll, he doesn’t throw quite as hard, but make no mistake, he’s still a flamethrower.

It’s become a bit of a topic de jour for the YES Network to mention Chapman’s declining velocity. It’s true. He doesn’t throw as hard as a 31-year-old as he did as a youngster, especially in Cincinnati. I don’t mean to pick on the broadcast team — hey, you gotta fill timeĀ — but Chapman’s velocity is hardly a cause for major concern. Among qualified relievers, his average fastball velocity is fourth-best.

Ah, heavy is the head that wears the crown.

The thing is, Chapman does seem aware that he’s lost just a bit of velocity, and that’s where this story picks up steam. Because he perhaps doesn’t feel as safe just blitzing every opposing batter with heat, he’s turned to his slider more and more the last two seasons. It was always at least a tantalizing pitch, but as we’ll see in the breakdown, when he is commanding the zone with the slider, he remains as lethal as ever.

Consider Fangraphs’ pVal metric. It tells us that for the last two seasons, Chapman’s most valuable pitch has been the breaking ball, not the well-known heater. The fastball remains quite a handful — and when Chapman is on his sequencing game, probably lifts the slider. The combination of the two, mixed around the zone with confidence and command, have kept Chapman among the game’s elite relievers even as age tries to draw its fee.

Chapman closed out the 2019 All-Star Game with epic flair. Let’s take a look.

Continue reading “Ode to a Pitcher: With the velocity still strong, Aroldis Chapman finds his slider”

All-Star Game, Pondering Red Sox Moves, the Future for the Nationals and More With Dan Szymborski

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Rangers slugger Joey Gallo made the most of his chance to shine in the All-Star Game.

Fangraphs Senior Writer Dan Szymborski joins me on the latest episode of The Adam Adkins Show. We discuss the 2019 MLBAll-Star Game, wonder how the Red Sox might try to improve, ponder how fun the trade deadline might be if the Nats blew it up, shake our heads at the Indians and celebrate the glory of Mike Trout.

You can find the show on iTunes and the below links.

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